Adidas Has Sponsorship Deals With 11 World Cup Teams, Ahead Of Nike's 10
Adidas "has the early lead in the shirt-sponsorship battle" that will accompany the 2018 World Cup, according to Richard Weiss of BLOOMBERG. With qualification for the tournament complete, the German company "has secured at least 11 jersey sponsorships," one more than Nike. While "the world’s biggest sporting-goods maker had a last-minute addition to its roster" after Australia beat Honduras to clinch the next-to-last spot, "several prominent Nike-sponsored teams -- including Chile, the Netherlands and the U.S. -- failed to qualify." The "sponsorship stakes are high," with Nike and adidas jointly selling almost $5B worth of football gear last year. While adidas has "at least one more team" than at the 2014 World Cup and Nike has two fewer, "the biggest change in sponsorship has hit smaller competitor" Puma. The brand had eight nations in the race in Brazil, "but four-time world champion Italy’s failure to win a spot means only Switzerland and Uruguay will represent the leaping-cat logo" at the '18 event. While FIFA shows Iranian players in adidas shirts on its website, the company said Thursday that it does not "have a World Cup deal with the nation’s team." New Balance and Umbro "each sponsor two teams participating," while Errea, Hummel, Uhlsport and Romai "have one each" (BLOOMBERG, 11/16).